Former ADF chief calls for release of secret report into security threat posed by climate crisis

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Chris Barrie says global heating poses larger security threat than China, and Australians should be armed with this information

A former Australian defence force chief has called on the government to release its assessment of the security threats posed by the climate crisis, which he says they received late last year.

Guardian Australia understands the Office of National Intelligence’s “urgent climate risk assessment” looked at how global heating affected Australia’s national security, but relied in part on classified information.

This means the government would have to decide whether, and how, the assessment is released publicly.

The former ADF chief Chris Barrie said he was concerned climate security risks were “missing in action” in the public debate triggered by the Aukus nuclear-powered submarine announcement.

Barrie said it was “rather surprising” that the Albanese government was continuing the previous Morrison government’s framing of China as the predominate security threat to Australia.

“Climate change as a security threat seems to be totally overlooked,” he said.

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